Faure Island Sanctuary - Conservation Programs
Radio-tracking Faure Island Sanctuary
Faure Island was formerly managed as a pastoral lease, running sheep and goats. After acquisition by AWC, and with support from its donors, these pastoral activities were replaced with an active program of on-ground management to restore the natural values of the island that form an important component of the Shark Bay World Heritage Area.
A major mammal restoration program has been established at the Faure Island Sanctuary, to reintroduce a suite of threatened mammals that were once common in the region.
AWC’s key management priorities at the Faure Island Sanctuary include:
- Development of a co-operative arrangement with DEC incorporating biological survey, feral animal eradication and native mammal translocations.
- Staged removal and confinement of sheep
- Eradication of feral goats
- Eradication of feral cats
- Release of five threatened mammal species including the Burrowing Bettong (Boodie), Shark Bay Mouse, Banded Hare-wallaby, Western Barred Bandicoot and Greater Sticknest Rat
- Removal of the noxious weed, African Boxthorn
- Regular, standardised monitoring of threatened species
- Support for a postgraduate study of Burrowing Bettong genetics and ecology
Two WA Natural Resource Management Grant Projects completed in the South West Region
As part of AWC's ongoing weed control program, two important projects have been completed by AWC in the South West Region in 2010/2011 with the assistance of WA State NRM grants, one at Karakamia Wildlife Sanctuary and the other on Faure Island.
Faure Island is home to the highly threatened Burrowing Bettong, Shark Bay Mice, Banded Hare-wallabies and Western Barred Bandicoots. Before it became a Wildlife Sanctuary it was a pastoral property and with that came weeds. With funding from the WA State NRM Program and volunteer help, AWC staff are a step closer to successfully controlling two potentially damaging weeds on the island: African Boxthorn (Lycium ferocissimum) and Lupin (Lupinus angustifolius). In July 2010 and June 2011 staff and volunteers traversed the 6000 ha island by road and on food spraying every Boxthorn and Lupin they could find. This should lead to the control of these weeds on the island, the recolonisation of native plant species and the protection of vital habitat for the important native inhabitants.
The Weed Dream Team: Geoff Brooks, Harry Speight, Terri Jones, Georgina Yeatman, Joy McGilvray, Jo Kuiper and Mark Thiele. Photo AWC/ Wayne Lawler
Karakamia is a haven for threatened wildlife, particularly the critically endangered Woylie (Bettongia penicillata), whose numbers have crashed throughout southern Australia. The population at Karakamia is the only population of Woylies not currently in decline in the South West. An eight foot high electric fence has excluded feral predators like foxes and cats from Karakamia since 1994, allowing native animals to thrive inside. In 2010, this vital barrier was upgraded with support from the State NRM Program, ensuring the continued protection of the Woylie and other wildlife at Karakamia into the future.
AWC is grateful for the funding support of the WA State NRM grant and have recently been successful in securing a further grant for extensive terrestrial and shore bird surveys on Faure Island.